Bilateral military activities with Russia suspended for the year

Norway is suspending all scheduled bilateral military activities with Russia for the rest of the year. In March, the Government decided to suspend such activities through the end of May and to reassess the situation at that time.

Norway is suspending all scheduled bilateral military activities with Russia for the rest of the year. In March, the Government decided to suspend such activities through the end of May and to reassess the situation at that time.

“Since the illegal annexation of Crimea, Russia has contributed further to Ukraine’s destabilisation. On the basis of an assessment of the situation in Ukraine and Russian actions, the Government has decided to extend the suspension of all bilateral military activities to the end of 2014,” says Minister of Defence Ine Eriksen Søreide.

This is consistent with the course Norway’s closest allies have taken. In practice, the suspension of cooperative activities through the remainder of the year means that Norwegian planning for 15 visits and activities that were to have taken place in the autumn of 2014 will not be carried out. Examples include:

  • Visit of the Russian army chief
  • Staff-level talks on naval cooperation
  • Official bilateral talks

Maintaining some cooperation

Collaboration will continue in Coast Guard, Border Guard and search-and-rescue activities as well as the workings of the Incidents at Sea Agreement. Contact between the Norwegian Joint Headquarters and the Northern Fleet will continue as well. This is to ensure the safety of all parties in northern marine areas and to maintain stability and predictability in our immediate region.

Commemorating the liberation of eastern Finnmark

In the autumn, a series of activities is planned to mark the 70th anniversary of the Soviet liberation of Finnmark County from Nazi Germany in the autumn of 1944. Norway wishes to carry out these activities as planned. The Government recognises a distinction of principle between military cooperation and military contacts in the current situation and activities linked to historical commemorations and veterans’ issues.